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Meet Cygnus Arioso

Introducing Cygnus Arioso! If you haven't heard them around town before, take a moment to get acquainted with the talented local ensemble that is set to play our Chamber Music Stage here at the Perth Concert Hall as part of their 'Cygnus Arioso Chamber Music Weekend', Saturday 30 and Sunday 31 January.

We sat down recently with violinist and artistic director, Akiko Miyazawa, to find out more on the meaning behind Cygnus Arioso and the highlights of their upcoming weekend that we can't wait to be a part of!

Read our interview with Akiko below!

 480 x 320 Cygnus Arioso group for blog
(Photo courtesy: Cygnus Arioso)

The Cygnus Arioso Chamber Music Weekend is coming up at the end of January, but for those who aren’t familiar with Cygnus Arioso, can you tell us a little about your group and what you have planned?
I created Cygnus Arioso to ensure that live music can thrive into the future despite the ongoing impacts of Covid-19. We aim to do this by building closer relationships with our audience and stronger networks between established performers and the stars of the next generation. And we embody the spirit of change, looking to evolve and share new ideas with each successive project. All this can be seen across the four concerts of the Chamber Weekend- yes, we’re excited to present the virtuosity of our “marquee” performers, but there is some serious talent from the younger generation mixed in. And audiences will have a great chance to mingle with the musicians at the High Tea between performances.


What a nice way to spend an afternoon! Tell us though, what does Cygnus Arioso mean?
Chamber music is an extremely exposed and therefore personal form of music making, and I find one simply has to approach each concert as if it were the last. So our name comes from this idea of the swansong, with Cygnus meaning “swan” and Arioso being a musical direction to play “in a singing style”. There’s also the connection with Perth’s Swan river, but our universal belief that to sing is to be human.


What are some of the highlights within the program?
They’re all highlights! But for me playing Mendelssohn’s Piano Trio No.1 for the first time will be personally very satisfying, and I can’t wait to play Mozart’s heavenly Clarinet Quintet with Ashley Smith. Harpist Yi-Yun Loei and flautist Andrew Nicholson have also suggested some iconic French works that will be a joy to perform.


Akiko, there is a piece on the program by a local composer – we’d love to learn more about the composer and the pieces that will be showcased…
Oh. That’s my husband Lachlan Skipworth who co-directs Cygnus Arioso with me! He’s arranged his exquisite Clarinet Quintet into a larger version with eight strings (instead of four) to further emphasise the dark colours and moods of the work. And his second Piano Quartet is a short yet emotionally charged work that is sure to be an audience hit!


Does Cygnus Arioso play other concerts throughout the year and if so, how can we hear more from this fabulous ensemble? 
Yes, we've got plenty in the pipeline! The best way to hear about our events is by joining our mailing list or by following our Facebook pages.

 Cygnus Arioso Chamber Music Weekend | Saturday 30 and Sunday 31

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Four concerts over two days with beautiful well-loved pieces and even music from local composer, Lachlan Skipworth. This highly anticipated, elegant affair will give classical music lovers a chance to enjoy music in an intimate setting with High Tea* on offer!
Purchase tickets for the entire weekend or just for your favourite sessions over the two days.

*Please note: High Tea must be purchased in advance

Tickets available here.